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Two almost-tropical storms promise windy and wet weather for U.S. East Coast

By: Dr. Jeff Masters, 2:50 PM GMT on September 25, 2008

A powerful extratropical storm (94L) with some tropical characteristics is bringing tropical storm-like conditions to the waters just offshore the U.S. coast, from South Carolina to Virginia. QuikSCAT data from this morning and last night (Figure 1) show that tropical storm-force winds of 40-50 mph cover a 400-mile swath of ocean just offshore the North Carolina coast. A Hurricane Hunter mission currently investigating 94L confirms that these winds continue, with a few spots of 55 mph winds. Visible satellite loops show a small amount of heavy thunderstorm activity near the center, with a long curved band of thunderstorms that arcs from the center northeastwards for several hundred miles. This configuration is characteristic of a subtropical or extratropical storm. NHC is currently judging the storm to be more extratropical, so it doesn't get a name. The difference is unimportant as far as the impact on the coast goes, since this storm will bring tropical storm force winds of 40-50 mph to the coast from northern South Carolina to Virginia today through Friday morning as it moves ashore. NHC is currently giving 94L a high (>50% chance) of becoming a subtropical storm by Friday. An Air Force Hurricane Hunter aircraft sent in a center fix at 9:48 am EDT, finding a central pressure of 994 mb and top surface winds of 54 knots (62 mph).


Figure 1. High-resolution QuikSCAT wind estimate from 7:05 pm EDT Wednesday 9/24/08. Browns and purples represent winds of tropical storm force (35 knots) or greater. Image credit: Brigham Young University.

The storm is affecting a wide area of coast from New York to South Carolina. Minor coastal flooding due to high winds is forecast as far north as New York City. The Onslow Bay buoy south of Wilmington, North Carolina, reported 13 foot waves and sustained winds of 45 mph at 8:20 am EDT. Wave heights in excess of 15 feet have been observed from Delaware to South Carolina, with the highest waves of 19 feet measured at the Virginia Beach Buoy 75 miles offshore from the Virginia/North Carolina border. Expect tide levels of 3-6 feet above normal along the coast, and rain amounts of 2-3 inches. Cape Hatteras, NC radar shows an extensive area of rain all along the coast. Thus far, (Figure 2) only 1-2 inches has fallen along the coast, but the heaviest rain has yet to move ashore. Rainfall amounts up to five inches (Figure 3) are likely from 94L as it sloshes northwards along the coast over the weekend.


Figure 2. Estimated rainfall from 94L.


Figure 3. Forecast rain amounts for the 5-day period beginning 8 am EDT Thursday 9/25/08. Image credit: NOAA.

Dominican Republic disturbance 93L
Tropical disturbance 93L is finally on the move, and is pulling away northwards from the Dominican Republic. Visible satellite loops show the classic signature of a tropical storm undergoing high wind shear--an exposed low-level circulation center, with all the heavy thunderstorm activity pushed over to one side by the shear. This morning's QuikSCAT pass found top winds of 45-50 mph in the region of heavy thunderstorms on the east side of 93L. A NOAA Hurricane Hunter plane is currently investigating 93L to see if it qualifies as a tropical storm.

The forecast
Wind shear remains near 20-25 knots, which is marginal for development. The current wind shear forecast from the SHIPS model relaxes the shear to 10-20 knots this afternoon through Friday, which should allow 93L to become a tropical storm. The most likely track for 93L, according to the computer models, is just east of Cape Cod, Massachusetts on Saturday afternoon, to a landfall in Nova Scotia on Saturday night or Sunday morning. Since the U.S. is on the thunderstorm-free weak side of the storm, it appears that Massachusetts and Maine will miss the highest winds. Sustained winds of 30-35 mph on Cape Cod and Nantucket are likely Saturday afternoon and evening from 93L. The storm's highest winds of 40-50 mph will affect Nova Scotia and New Brunswick Saturday night.

Elsewhere in the tropics
The UKMET and ECMWF models indicate the western Caribbean needs to be watched during the middle of next week for tropical storm development.

Links to follow
Cape Hatteras, NC weather
Duck, NC weather info and webcams fro the U.S. Army

The Hurricane Ike, "Presslord will wear a dress challenge" begins
Thanks go to everyone who has contributed to the portlight.org charity! We raised enough dough to send another truck with relief supplies to Winnie and Bridge City, Texas, where traditional relief efforts have fallen short. Wunderground member Presslord (AKA Paul Timmons, Jr.), who is coordinating this effort, has announced that if we raise an additional $10,000 mark, he will pose in a dress for our wunderphoto gallery. I know I personally will be contributing to help decorate our wunderphoto gallery (but more so to help out the people of Winnie and Bridge City!) We're up to $1500 so far.


Figure 4. The town of Bridge City was inundated with a massive storm surge even though it was far displaced from Ike's landfall point. This speaks to just how massive Ike was. The people of Bridge City, Winnie, and other small towns in Ike's path will need help for a long time to come: www.portlight.org. Image credit: Storm Junkie.

Your contributions do make a difference, and you can read more about the effort at at stormjunkie's blog.

Jeff Masters
Rio Yaurel de Arroyo
Rio Yaurel de Arroyo
Inundaciones en Arroyo, Puerto Rico debido a los fuertes aguaceros provocados por una fuerte onda tropical entre el 21 y 22 de Septiembre de 2008.
Bridge City in shambles from the Surge
Bridge City in shambles from the Surge
The town of Bridge City was inundated with a massive storm surge even though it was far displaced from Ike's landfall point. This speaks to just how massive Ike was. The people of Bridge City, Winnie, and other small towns in Ike's path will need help for a long time to come. www.portlight.org

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

Quoting Orcasystems:

Excuse me?


I said its a threat to Canada. Problem?
From what I've read, sts can keep their strength and even intensify on land.
...LOW PRESSURE AREA FINALLY DEVELOPS INTO A TROPICAL CYCLONE...

That sums up all our feelings.

Took its time!
Quoting TheMom:
I got an Access forbidden message that makes me think the NHC is gonna like come swinging in teh windows with tazers set to kill.... Ekkkk
girl you are cracking me up :)
Pressure here in New Bern @ 1009mb and falling.
Is there still a chance that it could be a storm by 2:00am tommorow?
waiting on dr masters info on kyle
Good afternoon,

Here in Wilmington, has been pouring! Does anyone think this will still strength once it makes landfall?

thanks in advance
If nothing else, IMO, they need to name it so that people will pay attention to it and at least put away loose objects so they don't become "flying objects"...the pressure and winds meet the criteria even if the fact that it is not purely tropical does not....that is my penny's worth...
Quoting hurricanemaniac123:
Is there still a chance that it could be a storm by 2:00am tommorow?


I guess...If it slows significantly off the coast and meanders over the Gulf Stream. But thats extremely unlikely.
Quoting hurricanemaniac123:
Is there still a chance that it could be a storm by 2:00am tommorow?
IMO opinion it will be upgraded to STS status tonite
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


I said its a threat to Canada. Problem?

No, not anymore :)
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


So a thermal core system with 992mb pressure and 65mph winds doesnt meet criteria? Thats not why there not naming it.


They even issued a Vortex Message and the NHC still didn't name 94L.
Charleston, SC is just a miserable, dreary, drizzly, windy, cold day...feels more like November than September...weird
Quoting Orcasystems:

No, not anymore :)


Good..lol
Moving North at 0 MPH..or not moving at all :). We'll see how long it stalls...wonder why it's not moving?
So was the vortex message for Kyle and 94L?
Its moving north a 8 mph :).
516. Alockwr21 8:51 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
Moving North at 0 MPH..or not moving at all :). We'll see how long it stalls...wonder why it's not moving?
Action: Quote | Ignore User


Not exactly sure.I think someone said as the extratropical storm moves further away, it will increase in speed.
Folks, please focus your attention in the BOC as this is where the greatest potential lies for a significant cyclone to affect US. The key word being "significant", not to downplay Kyle or 94 L.
I am wondering if we are going to get the Fujiwara Effect out of 94L and Kyle.
where exactly is 94 supposed to make landfall now or are they still not sure...some of the spaghetti models shifted back to central SC...

http://www.tropicalatlantic.com/plots/94-googlemaps.shtml
Quoting cantoriesnumber1fan:
Folks, please focus your attention in the BOC as this is where the greatest potential lies for a significant cyclone to affect US. The key word being "significant", not to downplay Kyle or 94 L.


please explain
Quoting Alockwr21:
Moving North at 0 MPH..or not moving at all :). We'll see how long it stalls...wonder why it's not moving?


North at 8mph.
Quoting cantoriesnumber1fan:
Folks, please focus your attention in the BOC as this is where the greatest potential lies for a significant cyclone to affect US. The key word being "significant", not to downplay Kyle or 94 L.
do you have a link?
well,a flood watch has been issued for southern new england,possibly 3 to 6 inches of rain.
Quoting tiggeriffic:
where exactly is 94 supposed to make landfall now or are they still not sure...some of the spaghetti models shifted back to central SC...

http://www.tropicalatlantic.com/plots/94-googlemaps.shtml
Hey Tigg - stay safe.
We have been under a flood and gale wind advisory since yesterday...yuck...
TY Conchy...still trying to figure out where the little &^&**( is going...lol...but I guess it doesn't matter since the swath is so long eh?
Is there a discussion anywhere on weather stations and/or .....wow, just looked out the window. Damn I shoulda left 10 minutes ago.....
I think it is interesting how Taiwan, China and Japan are constantly getting hit by these huge storms and yet then seem to suffer little loss of life and surprisingly little economic damage.

The Philipines and Burma, etc. are a different story but it seems to me that China, Taiwa and Japan deal pretty well.
523. tiggeriffic 8:56 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
where exactly is 94 supposed to make landfall now or are they still not sure...some of the spaghetti models shifted back to central SC...

http://www.tropicalatlantic.com/plots/94-googlemaps.shtml
Action: Quote | Ignore User



Thankyou for the link.Someone earlier told me there was no models runs for a extratropical storm.
i think cantoriesnumber1fan is right
bet your eyes are even larger now...ROFL...no offense...I am just one of the resident jokers..
No prob North...always a link for everything somewhere...

look at this
Wind advisory ends in an hour here. I imagine they'll extend it.
Quoting lickitysplit:
I think it is interesting how Taiwan, China and Japan are constantly getting hit by these huge storms and yet then seem to suffer little loss of life and surprisingly little economic damage.

The Philipines and Burma, etc. are a different story but it seems to me that China, Taiwa and Japan deal pretty well.
yea i know wat you mean!!!
Quoting btwntx08:

look at this


Is that area favorable for development, btwntx08?
Quoting lickitysplit:
I think it is interesting how Taiwan, China and Japan are constantly getting hit by these huge storms and yet then seem to suffer little loss of life and surprisingly little economic damage.

The Philipines and Burma, etc. are a different story but it seems to me that China, Taiwa and Japan deal pretty well.
hello can you say coverup, after that major earthquake, they were busted when the american reporters got in there and reported it, and after a big push they finally excepted aid from the world, IMO I would say this is similar
Quoting btwntx08:

look at this


Not impressive. Doubt anything will form.
certinally somthing brewing in the GOM.
Quoting btwntx08:

look at this


Look at This...
GOM has HIGH SHEAR
Quoting Vortex95:
certinally somthing brewing in the GOM.


Its a flare up. Probably will dissipate by 2am.
damage...may agree with...since they have been hit so hard and so many times, there is nothing left to destroy maybe?????? Not only that, the poorest areas live in a shanty...after the storm, they pick up the debris and slap it back together...if their neighbor died, they pick up their pieces and use em to make a bigger shanty...
could someone please tell me wat BOC means?? thanks
It has a better shot of surviving goin over the Yucatan than hitting that sheer.
551. OBXNC
Wow . . . it has gotten very warm and muggy outside here in Kill Devil Hills. It was chilly and wet the first half of the day.

Can someone PLEASE help me understand ... it seems to me ... and I'm not a meteo, but it seems that this storm has taken on the classic definition of a subtropical storm. I have watched bands develop around a clear coc, and as that happened the wind has virtually stopped here.

I see the connection with the frontal system, especially on satellite, but it looks very clear on radar that this swirl is an entity of its own.

Can anyone please help?
Quoting tiggeriffic:
where exactly is 94 supposed to make landfall now or are they still not sure...some of the spaghetti models shifted back to central SC...

http://www.tropicalatlantic.com/plots/94-googlemaps.shtml


Follow the ants!!!

;-)
Whats going on in the BOC?
Quoting keywestbrat:
hello can you say coverup, after that major earthquake they were busted after the american reporters got in there and reported it, and after a big push they finally excepted aid from the world


Thats weird. My impression of the earthquake was that the Chinese press was all over is right off and that the Chinese authorities were very open about it. Thats not to say that they dont "cover up" on hurricanes but I didnt sense that from the earthquake. But, what about Japan and Taiwan?
Quoting hurricanemaniac123:


Is that area favorable for development, btwntx08?

in the boc there is low shear just to its north 40+ kts of shear
Link
CRAZY shear in GOM:



549. BKeen12 9:09 PM GMT on September 25, 2008
could someone please tell me wat BOC means?? thanks
Action: Quote | Ignore User


I think it means somewhere in the GOM.
thanks stormw...not getting as much attention as it should IMO...having to rely on Local Mets instead of the internet...
Interesting note here. Assuming Kyle moves where he's forecast to go, this is the first time this year since Fay that fewer than half of this year's storms have been in the GOM for some part of their life. I can't find a recent year so far that had such a high percentage of the total count of storms entering the GOM at some point. Even 2004 and 2005 look to be at best about 33%.
Quoting BKeen12:
could someone please tell me wat BOC means?? thanks


Bay of Campeche.
Quoting tea3781:
Whats going on in the BOC?


Not much. Couple of thunderstorms.
70knots of shear in the GOM. Beautiful....

Frying Pan Tower

NDBC - Station 41013 Observations
Station 41013
September 25, 2008 4:50 pm EDT
Location: 33.436N 77.743W
Wind Direction: E (100°)
Wind Speed: 33 knots
Wind Gust: 41 knots
Significant Wave Height: 13 ft
Dominant Wave Period: 8 sec
Atmospheric Pressure: 29.41 in (995.9 mb)
Pressure Tendency: -0.13 in (-4.3 mb)
Air Temperature: 77°F (25.2°C)
Water Temperature: 77°F (25.1°C)

565. 900MB
Storm-
Are you right or left of Track on Kyle?
Do you agree with NHC that it will be a hurricane in Maine?
Could a Fujiwhatyamacallit effect push it closer to Long Island?
Thanks again!
Re:549

Check out StormW blog....he has the whole list of abbrev. spelled out
486. KeyWestBrat
thanks! That does help, still curious if it is Kyle related since it is all the way on the other side of the bahamas. Seems unlikely but interesting to me anyway!
Crazy shear protecting US from S and W: Link
ummmm....no ants out today...too wet...LOL... but no birds or squirls either...so couldn't animal cast if I wanted to....
Quoting btwntx08:

in the boc there is low shear just to its north 40+ kts of shear
Link


Still, you stated it was the real cyclone threat to the US and that is simply not going to take place, doubt it will be more than what you see now.
Cyber Teddy, May you answer this:

So was the vortex message for Kyle and 94L?
Quoting SWFLDigTek:


Still, you stated it was the real cyclone threat to the US and that is simply not going to take place, doubt it will be more than what you see now.


I really dont see anything developing in the next 72hours. (besides 94L)
Quoting lickitysplit:


Thats weird. My impression of the earthquake was that the Chinese press was all over is right off and that the Chinese authorities were very open about it. Thats not to say that they dont "cover up" on hurricanes but I didnt sense that from the earthquake. But, what about Japan and Taiwan?
they were open about it like I said after they were called out days later, american news isn't the only forum in this world.
Complete Refresh
just hit me lol Bay of Campeche!
Link

Shear's still building there in the Gulf too.


uh oh. Is this possible for us in Nova Scotia again. Please say no...CBC news says sunny.?

Thats hurricane Juan 2003 BTW
Quoting SWFLDigTek:


Still, you stated it was the real cyclone threat to the US and that is simply not going to take place, doubt it will be more than what you see now.


Sorry btwntx08, it was not you who made that statement, it was cantoriesnumber1fan.

My apologies.
Quoting tiggeriffic:
damage...may agree with...since they have been hit so hard and so many times, there is nothing left to destroy maybe?????? Not only that, the poorest areas live in a shanty...after the storm, they pick up the debris and slap it back together...if their neighbor died, they pick up their pieces and use em to make a bigger shanty...


I hope you mean the pieces of their neighbor's shack!
oh gee, thanks orca...some of the spaghetti is a little close to me...just what I wanted to hear...but...on the other hand...if the winds get high enough and they close the bridges...I don't have to go to work tomorrow....hmmmmm....
lol chrisW....yep...type in shorthand...ROFL
Quoting tiggeriffic:
oh gee, thanks orca...some of the spaghetti is a little close to me...just what I wanted to hear...but...on the other hand...if the winds get high enough and they close the bridges...I don't have to go to work tomorrow....hmmmmm....


Seeee... you can please some of the people all of the time :)
I believe shear tendency will decrease with time as an anticyclone builds aloft the GOM which could spell trouble.
Amazing how we've stayed in that slot all day.

TO THE SOUTH....TO THE SOUTH....TO THE SOUTH...
ROFLMAO
Quoting dewdana:
486. KeyWestBrat
thanks! That does help, still curious if it is Kyle related since it is all the way on the other side of the bahamas. Seems unlikely but interesting to me anyway!
I know what you mean, but I trust the shrimpers and fishermen on there view of the weather, and when we had high tides with hanna they said it was cause of that, so I reckon it has to be kinda the same thing, with that pushing and 94L combind, but the BOC thing may push the water back out, we'll see,
still there could be 95L in the boc
Quoting StormW:
565. 900MB 5:12 PM EDT on September 25, 2008
Storm-
Are you right or left of Track on Kyle?
Do you agree with NHC that it will be a hurricane in Maine?
Could a Fujiwhatyamacallit effect push it closer to Long Island?
Thanks again!


Ih he gets too close to 94L...left of track. Based on current forecast steering, NHC track looks about right, As I said in my morning fcst...it's all gonna hinge on how close Kyle gets to 94L.


I nominate 94L to be called STS Alpha... just like the old days.
Quoting Stormchaser2007:


I really dont see anything developing in the next 72hours. (besides 94L)


The wave out at 36W/37W ain't looking too shabby and low shear all the way...

Loop

Quoting cantoriesnumber1fan:
I believe shear tendency will decrease with time as an anticyclone builds aloft the GOM which could spell trouble.


So you think that patch of convection is going to hang out in the BOC for 120hrs, then move toward the US?
Look at the Shear Forecast Loop
Quoting tiggeriffic:
oh gee, thanks orca...some of the spaghetti is a little close to
me...just what I wanted to hear...but...on the other hand...if the
winds get high enough and they close the bridges...I don't have to go
to work tomorrow....hmmmmm....

Check the ILM radar...can see the eye and track it westbound!... looks like it will come in well North of you
ok...gotta bounce for a bit...time to make the doughnuts...i mean dinner...(rather have doughnuts though)bbl with some light hearted humor to try to brighten someone else's day...
new blog
Quoting tiggeriffic:
ummmm....no ants out today...too wet...LOL... but no birds or squirls either...so couldn't animal cast if I wanted to....


There were alot of squirrels out this morning, I almost hit 3 of them just driving thru my neighborhood. My cats seem to be enjoying the weather, running around like crazy. I am kind of enjoying the day, wasn't expecting weather like this.
Quoting tiggeriffic:
ok...gotta bounce for a bit...time to make the doughnuts...i mean dinner...(rather have doughnuts though)bbl with some light hearted humor to try to brighten someone else's day...


donuts for dinner? my kid would LOVE that.